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May 4, 2007

Appreciate Your Teachers

Bridget M., a high school senior attending New York University this fall and one of Teen Ink's interns, wrote this week's "Extra Ink."

  Educators are among the hardest working people out there; they inspire the next generation by teaching the value of a good education along with hard work and perseverance. Many teachers also motivate through their own exceptional character. It may be through the friendship they offer, or through their love of knowledge and learning. The success of the next generation can largely be attributed to the inspiration of this generation's teachers.

   As National Teachers Day approaches (this year it's Tuesday, May 8) many parents are organizing appreciation breakfasts and luncheons while students are left wondering what valuable gift they can purchase to show their gratitude for their favorite teacher. The first instinct of a generous student may be to buy a cute pin or a mug, but many teachers say that the most valuable gifts they could receive are either homemade or heartfelt messages from the students themselves. Teachers just love to know that they are appreciated by receiving homemade cards and freshly baked goods.

   Other teachers have expressed gratitude for students who donate their time and resources in their name. For example, DonorsChoose is an organization that allows teachers to request classroom items such as new books, science equipment, or funding for class field trips, and donors help fund these requests. Giving back to other teachers is a great way to let your teacher know you really appreciate all the work they do for you.

  So whether you bake, make, or buy something for your number-one teacher, it is great just to let them know that they have had an effect on your educational experience. Appreciation is wonderful to receive; whether it is a little something or a huge gesture, just let your teacher know that you care.

   For more gift ideas check out the article "Gifts Teachers Really Want".

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